Friday, October 14, 2011

Ready for Ukraine

Packing is completed and the time has come to board our first plane in just a few hours.  Our group of seven is leaving Saturday morning to join Amy who will be waiting for us in Ukraine.  She has been there for one week already with a group of four.  Her group members will be passing us in the air as they are on their way home and we are on our way to take their place.  It was a large group effort to get this team ready to go ...

Holly breaking down wheelchairs into pieces ... 

Kym fitting those pieces into suitcases

Everyone doing their part to get all the equipment packed.  The rules are that when flying internationally you are allowed two large suitcases, but on this team, you donate your two suitcases to the trip to be filled with equipment and supplies.  You use a carry-on backpack for your personal belonging and carry the suitcases with equipment from here to other side of the world.   

The trick is that each suitcase can only weigh 50 lbs. according to airline rules.  Walkers, wheelchairs, braces and therapy equipment is heavy and cumbersome, so it takes a lot of packing, weighing, re-arranging and re-weighing in order to make sure each piece of luggage is correct weight and dimension. 

A lot of donated braces and shoes traveling to the other side of the world to be delivered to children in significant need ...

We are traveling with 15 large suitcases, packed to the max with equipment, as well as 7 walkers and 3 wheelchairs that we will gait check and carry by hand through the airports and on and off the airplanes.

These are my five-star accommodations ... complete with 8 days worth of power bars, travel toilet paper (apparently you don't take that for granted over there) and my car shammy bath towel.  I have everything I need for the week and I am so ready to get gone!!

Thank you for all your thoughts, prayers, donations, and words of encouragement.  I am so grateful to be a part of such an amazing team of people with both those who I am traveling with and those who are supporting us here at home.  Thank you SO SO much!!

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